Friday, September 7, 2012

Red Fox by Karina Halle

Title: Red Fox
Author: Karina Halle
Publisher: Metal Blonde Books
Release Date: June 12, 2011
Pages: 324 pages (paperback)
How I Got the Book: Received a copy for review from the author
Purchase/Pre-order: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Promotional Materials and More: series website

Red Fox (Experiment in Terror, #2)With Book Two of the Experiment in Terror Series, Perry Palomino and Dex Foray trade in the stormy Oregon coast for the unforgiving deserts of New Mexico.

In the for­got­ten town of Red Fox, a Navajo cou­ple is tor­tured by things unseen and by motives unknown. Wild ani­mals slink through their house in the dark, a bar­rage of stones pound their roof nightly, and muti­lated sheep car­casses are turn­ing up on their prop­erty. Armed with a cam­era and just enough to go on, Perry and Dex travel to the des­o­late locale, hop­ing to film the super­nat­ural occur­rences and add cred­i­bil­ity to their flail­ing web­cast. Only their show has a lot more work­ing against them than just grow­ing pains. Tested by dubi­ous ranch hands, a ghost from Dex’s past, and shapeshift­ing decep­tion, the ama­teur ghost hunters must learn to trust each other in order to fight the most ancient of myths…or die trying.


A quick disclaimer before I begin: the author is one of my friends. Neither my rating nor my review have been influenced by this.

This review was hard to write. Like, wow, man. Wow.

Perry and Dex's new jobs as the host and cameraman of the webshow Experiment in Terror takes them all the way from the Pacific Northwest to New Mexico, home of some creepy-ass shit going on. It's a good thing I was in the mood for creepy because wow, did this book deliver! Some scenes, like the scorpion attack during the sweat ceremony, were well-written and the best kind of hair-raising. Scary things aren't my schtick, but I couldn't stop reading.

Perry and Dex, now posing as husband and wife so they can stay on the ranch where all the unusual activity is happening, still have fantastic banter and their sexual tension is rapidly heating up. With the introduction of Dex's old/former friend Maximus, we get to learn a little more about how Dex used to be and how that plays a role in who he is as Perry knows him. Perry's narrative voice drew me in thoroughly--to the point where I decided to take Red Fox with me on laundry day rather than a book I've been dying to read for a year and a half. Perry ends up doing some dumb things, but this is Perry. She ain't perfect and her doing the occasional dumb thing helps move the book along/develop her character.

(My experience was made that much more fun because I read this in tandem with the relevant stories from The Dex-Files and got to see a scene through Dex's POV as soon as I was done seeing it through Perry's. I recommend this only if you're the kind of person who doesn't mind spoilers most of the time.)

I can't recall having many issues with this installment. A little bit of rough writing and editing issues--less than what I saw in Darkhouse and The Benson, which is great--and a lack of understanding about the antagonists' motivations. As they say in the book, some people just get angry sometimes, and that's very true. Still, I wanted a little more from it.

Dead Sky Morning, the third book of the series, is ready to go on my Kindle. If the next books on my plate weren't so high priority (and long-awaited; one of them was delayed for over a year), I'd be jumping into it right now!

4 stars!

What am I reading next?: Enshadowed by Kelly Creagh